Daily Archives: 27/07/2016

Serco invests in cyber security technology for global network

Serco has invested in a new network security system from Chemring Technology Solutions. Perception will be rolled out across Serco’s operations in the UK, the USA, the Middle East and Australia.

 

Originally developed for the UK Government back in 2011, Perception is the world’s first bio-inspired network security solution, which will complement Serco’s existing computer network security systems by identifying the potential threats they cannot.

 

Mark Henshaw, head of information security for Serco Group, explained: “I’m extremely impressed with Perception as it very effectively fills the gap that has developed between traditional network security tools and the expanding threat landscape as we see increasingly sophisticated malware and blended advanced threats.”

 

Henshaw added: “Perception sold itself as it’s a powerful tool that identifies apparently benign events which could seriously impact Serco. It’s proving to be simple to implement and has demonstrated value in a very short time by identifying malware, policy violation, suspicious data movement, device configuration issues and pointers to areas where awareness training should be increased. Many of the issues identified were subtle in nature and not picked up by our current network security systems.”

PerceptionSensor

 

Unlike other cyber security solutions, Perception is behavioural with no rigid rules-based architecture. Perception adapts to the network’s changing profile, automatically identifying malicious activity and making it more difficult for malware to evade detection. It will also detect the slow, unauthorised exfiltration of business information even when obfuscation techniques are used to evade traditional rule-based security defences.

 

Perception runs at high data rates at the core of a network rather than at the perimeter. Targeted, complex logic performs in-depth analysis and classification, avoiding the high false alarm rates usually experienced with anomaly detection systems.

 

“Serco supported Chemring Technology Solutions during Beta tests of Perception,” concluded Henshaw, “and we were particularly impressed by how different it is from traditional network security systems that rely on pattern matching. Perception collects and analyses information in a different way by looking for the unusual and linking apparently non-threatening network activity to identify hidden malware.”

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Zaun and Harper Chalice secure success from Olympic springboard

Two Midlands security businesses are preparing to celebrate their greatest day in history, exactly four years on from the opening of the London 2012 Olympics.

On 27 July 2012, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II officially opened the 2012 Olympic Games after apparently surviving a death-defying skydive with James Bond actor Daniel Craig as part of Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle’s Isles of Wonder Opening Ceremony.

Wolverhampton’s Zaun and Coventry-based Harper Chalice cite their largest-ever contracts as the springboard to the growth and success they now enjoy. They helped make the 30th Olympiad the biggest security operation post-war Britain had ever mounted at a cost of £553 million and involving 10,000 police officers, 13,500 Armed Forces personnel – more than Britain had deployed in Afghanistan at that time – and no less than 70,000 Games Maker volunteers.

London 2012 was widely regarded as a triumph. It was the first Olympics where every participating country included female athletes. It enjoyed packed stadiums and smooth organisation, and the focus on sporting legacy and post-games venue sustainability was seen as a blueprint for future Olympics (including Rio 2016 that opens in nine days’ time).

ZaunHarperChaliceLondon2012

‘Legacy’ and ongoing community benefit was probably the key factor on which London secured the Games back in 2005 in the face of fierce competition from Paris. London 2012 delivered that in spades, along with a boost to the economy and a genuine nationwide ‘feelgood factor’ that arguably helped turn a faltering post-credit crunch recovery into sustained economic growth.

The regeneration of east London has been spectacular, though many argue about whether the 2012 Games sparked a long-term sustained greater participation in sports and improved fitness levels to combat the obesity epidemic.

Ongoing contracts for manufacturers

The world-class sporting facilities are also part of the legacy, but perhaps less obvious are the ongoing contracts for British manufacturers and service providers, as enjoyed by Harper Chalice and Zaun (among others).

Harper Chalice’s general manager and director Chris Hackett said: “As part of the pre-award process we had to install our systems alongside our competitors for trial and testing by the Government Security Services. The prize for winning was huge – 26 kilometres of PIDs and electric fencing at over 400 zones around the Olympic Park that has formed the basis of the TriSecure complete perimeter protection system that we now provide today alongside Zaun for high-security utilities sites and others.”

Certainly, Zaun’s Games legacy as the principal 2012 ‘Olympics fencer’ keeps running and running. The business has returned to the Olympic Stadium on several occasions, first decommissioning after the 2012 Paralympics, then reconfiguring and removing security fencing for last autumn’s Rugby World Cup and most recently to prepare it as the new home of West Ham United FC and a national competition centre for UK Athletics.

The transformation has included installing the largest roof if its kind in the world, a community track, innovative retractable seating, spectator and hospitality facilities and external landscaping.

The London legacy is about much more than just sporting venues. Zaun has also provided fencing around the ArcelorMittal Orbit, the transformation of the 275 metre-long Olympic media complex into iCITY and innovative ‘green’ acoustic fencing panels for the Chobham Academy on the former Athletes’ Village site.

Zaun’s head of sales, Chris Plimley, concluded: “London’s legacy has touched education, commerce, industry, culture, media, tourism, sport and a whole lot more. We owe a large part of our commercial success to the 2012 Games. London showed how the Olympics can benefit an entire nation.”

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